Walk 21: Toy's Hill and Ide Hill
4.7 Miles (2 hours)
Map: Explorer 147 (Start at grid reference TQ469517)
in the free car park at Toy’s Hill.
Leave the car park by the entrance and cross the road to the footpath opposite. Pass an information board and take the left fork. At a junction of five paths with two waymark posts, take the path just right of straight on (the second one on the right). Just a few metres down this path, turn sharp right onto a path that descends quite steeply, leading to steps down to Scords Lane. Go straight across, down the drive that leads to Scords Farm. When the drive bends sharp left, take a footpath on the right at the corner downhill between fences.
On emerging in another drive with two metal gates opposite, go through the right hand gate. Carry straight on to a metal gate ahead and go through. Follow the path across a field and into another field. Half way across field, on passing the corner of a wood that sticks out into the field on the left, bear slightly right and climb up to a kissing gate in the hedge. Go through the gate into the lane.
Turn left downhill. As soon as the road bends slightly to the right, take the track on the left just before a house (Drovers).
At a second pair of field gates, go through a kissing gate on the right.
Bear right downhill across clearing to a gate at the lowest corner. Go through the gate and straight across the next field to the corner of a wood that sticks out into it. Halfway over, you cross a hedge and a stream.
At the corner of the wood, follow the field edge with the wood on your left. Beyond the next gate
(at the lowest point) bear right uphill through a gate and along a
concrete track to Henden Manor. The track forks. The left fork leads to where you want to go, but the right of way goes down the right fork and then turns left just before a house, so that you go along two sides of a triangle. Follow the track through the farm, past Henden Manor and carry on until you reach a road. Turn left along the road and then take a track on the right just after Oakwood Lodge.
When you reach Chains Farm, keep left and go through a couple of kissing gates into a large field. Bear left (but don’t go through the gateway immediately on the left) and follow a track to the highest point of the field. The path beyond is fairly obvious, taking you past a pond to Boarhill. Go through the gate into the drive and up the hill. When the drive bends sharp left, take a path on the right that goes steeply uphill through Hanging Bank wood with several sections of steps and handrails. When you reach a broader, more level path, turn left and follow to a grass mini-roundabout. Take the farthest track on the right along the fence and follow downhill to the road.
Turn left along the main road, getting fine view of Bough Beech Reservoir on the left. Cross to a car park on the right and keep to the left of the toilets (the Community Shop behind the toilets serves refreshments) to cross a side road and enter the National Trust woodland of Ide Hill. Keep left and follow a path that runs parallel with the road, initially climbing, next descending and then climbing again to a stone seat commemorating Octavia Hill. Carry straight on past the seat to a triple fork in the path. The right fork carries the Greensand Way, but you should take the left fork. Descend through the wood, cross two streams and then ascend along the edge of the wood (which should be on your right). When the wood finishes go through a gate and turn sharp left downhill. Initially the hedge is on your left but at the bottom, after a section with no hedge, it is on your right.
Cross a footbridge over a stream and go straight uphill, over a stile by a gate between two copses and on to a superfluous stile and gateposts at the top of the field. Turn left along the field edge until you reach a bench offering more fine views of Ide Hill and Bough Beech Reservoir. Just past the bench, go through a gate into the wood. Follow the path (Greensand Way) uphill, ignoring any side paths, until you return to the junction of five paths that you passed at the beginning of the walk. Take the second path on the left to return to the car park the way you came.
VIII stayed here when visiting Anne Boleyn at Hever Castle
A campaigner for
better housing for the London poor, Octavia Hill had a cottage at nearby
Crockham Hill and was involved in founding both the Commons Protection
Society (now the Open Spaces Society)
and the National Trust.
Ide Hill from Scords Wood
Our book of Ten
Favourite Walks in the Kent Countryside has routes for ten more
walks like this one.
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and maintained as possible. Of course we also organise led
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